First English edition, first printing. Inscribed presentation copy. Hardcover issue. Publisher's original grey cloth white paper label printed in black and red to the upper board. With a black and white plate reproducing an etching by Kurt Seligmann tipped in as a frontispiece. An excellent example, the binding square and firm with a little fraying at the spine ends and faint toning at the extremities. The contents are clean throughout and without previous owner's inscriptions or stamps. This is the first appearance of Mills's translation of Mallarmé's poem Herodias (an unfinished imagining of the story of Salome, started in the 1860s), attempting to improve upon Roger Fry's earlier effort, and printing the English translation and French original in facing text.
Inscribed in black ink on the front endpaper "pour Barbara Reis / souvenir des journées / de chaleur, de discussions / et de travail / amicalement / Kurt Seligmann / juillet 1940". This copy, presented by the illustrator Swiss-American surrealist Kurt Seligmann (1900 - 1962) is number 7 of 80 numbered copies issued in cloth, from a limited edition of 300. The recipient was fellow artist Barbara Poe-Levee, née Reis (1922-2013), the daughter of wealthy art collectors Bernard and Rebecca Reis, who in 1940 befriended Peggy Guggenheim and collaborated with her on many projects. Reis was at the time of this inscription studying under Seligman alongside Robert Motherwell. Her debut exhibition was in the 1942 "First Papers of Surrealism" show, organised by Marcel Duchamp and Andre Breton in New York and following that was the youngest of the artists to exhibit at Guggenheim's critically acclaimed "Exhibition by 31 Women". This inscribed Herodias thus makes for an appealing handing-down of the lineage of literary and artistic surrealism to a significant artist at the outset of her career.
Stock code: 19314